|Image: My own|
From the book cover: Cornelia Brown works as a waitress in Cafe Dora, but the silver screen and its romantic dreams are her real inspiration...
Clare, on the other hand, is just eleven and she already knows the difference between real life and stories: every day is a struggle with a manic-depressive mother.
When Clare's estranged father walks into Cafe Dora one day - sweeping a certain waitress off her feet- it's a while before Cornelia comes down to earth... only to find a motherless eleven-year-old girl in need of love and affection. For life has a way of upsetting our preconceptions, and Clare and Cornelia are about to learn what can happen when love- real Love- walks in.
My thoughts: I know it's been a while since I did a proper book review here. I must confess that I was reluctant in picking up this book because I was expecting a cliched love story from the title. My only regret now is that I should have read it sooner. Yes, I loved it.
The characters of Cornelia and Clare are so well etched out, it's hard to believe that this is the debut work of the author. I was hooked from the first line. One of the reasons why I loved it so much was because I could empathize with both the main characters. At certain parts I could relate so much to Clare that it was almost creepy.
Another reason was the literary references throughout the book. I love it when an author talks about other books inside the story. There are not just literary references, but references to movies as well. Cornelia is an interesting character and I loved how the author has narrated her story in the first person. It helps me get into the character's shoes most of the time. The chapters alternate between Clare and Cornelia throughout the book.
There are only a handful of characters in the novel and the author has brought in beautiful shades of grey through each one of them. I loved the characters of Viviana -Clare's mother, Teo - Cornelia's brother in law who happens to be a ray of silver lining in the second half of the story as well as Martin - Clare's father.
Being a poet, the author has used some beautiful sentences and crafted the entire story so well. Yes, it has love. Plenty of it, in fact. But the bond and mutual love shared between Clare and Cornelia is what I loved the most. A thirty one year old waitress who finds herself in the most unlikeliest of situations and the mature and confused Clare who has been forced to grow up way too early and face the harshness of reality that life has to offer. Clare is a voracious reader and writes down her thoughts and stories in her journal; this made me like her even more.
I would recommend this to everyone who's looking and believes in love; how it is possible that you can find love, true love when you are least expecting it.